Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Birding on the Bow

I hadn't initially planned to do any bird watching when I was in Calgary but hearing the mercury was going to reach the mid-teens and having a good chunk of free time before seeing the symphony, I decided I'd bring along my field guide and binoculars and have a go.  I wasn't really sure what I might see but on my two previous trips to Calgary I didn't get a chance to check out along the river this past Friday seemed as good a time as ever.  As it turned out, the weather made if absolutely fantastic and I ended up walking all the way from 11th Street to the confluence with the Elbow River.

If memory serves me correctly, this is the Peace Bridge.

After crossing and re-crossing the river without seeing too much I found myself at Prince's Island Park.  Up to this point I had seen a lot of Canada Geese and well as some Mallards that I could add to my year list, but nothing earth-shattering.  I did spot a few fast moving white-breasted nuthatches which I had seen last time I was done there.

Past this stand of tall trees and found myself among some pines and came across my first Brown Creeper.  My guide book mentioned that these are incredibly difficult to spot and it definitely wasn't kidding.  Take a small, well-camoflaged brown bird throw in some thick dark pines and a lot of glare from the sun and you have a very big challenge trying to get a solid identification.

I love the way the skyline stands out against the surrounding parkland.

The one thing that caught me completely by surprise was the marsh area down by Prince's Island.  While at the time there were only Canada Geese and Mallards for the most part, there were A LOT of them.  It has me interested in seeing what else you could find there a little later on in the season.

My list for the morning ended up being 10 specie sightings, not too shabby for the time of year and considering I hadn't initially planned to see the place.

1 comment:

Bonnie said...

Typical Alberta spring,,,seeing and hearing many pairs1